Ogata Kōrin's Irises: Felicitations in Edo-period Paintings

13 April–12 May 2019

Exhibition Overview


The Irises screens by Ogata Kōrin (1658–1716) are a National Treasure. They are both a painting of flowers and one based on the Yatsuhashi, “eight bridges,” scene in the Tales of Ise. And Yatsuhashi has long been a famous place celebrated in waka poetry. Flowers, classic themes, famous places:: given the multifaceted nature of these screens, this exhibition of Ogata Kōrin’s Irises consists of three sections. The first section presents works whose themes are the aristocratic manners and court literature admired by people in the Edo period. The second section brings together a profusion of floral paintings, a genre inspired by the boom in growing flowers that occurred in and around the imperial court in the early Edo period. The third presents works that depict the city of Kyoto, filled with the excitement of the Gion Festival, plus famous places and events in other parts of the country, including spots bustling with pilgrims visiting shrines and temples and tourists on pleasure jaunts. Enjoy this bouquet of paintings from the Edo period, an age blessed with peace.

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